Don't know what you have until it's gone? Rhinos hope it doesn't come to that
In the words of Rhinos co-owner David Dworkin, his team is the most revered club outside of the MLS in the country.
The thing is, he may be right.
Even though attendance has been dipping in recent years, the success hasn't stopped for the Rhinos. Rochester has made the playoffs in a remarkable 21 out of 22 years of existence, winning multiple championships, most recently in 2015.
But perhaps what they're best known for is their 1999 US Open Cup, which to this day remains the only time a non-MLS club has won the trophy.
The Rhinos play high-level soccer, in a town that historically loves soccer. But unless more people start showing up, and more businesses and community leaders start stepping up, the storied franchise will be just that. A story to tell your kids about the time when professional soccer in Rochester was a big deal.
The Dworkins say the team needs $1.3 million by the end of November, which they hope can be raised through a combination of season ticket sales, corporate sponsorships, getting a cut of the Monroe County hotel tax, and having a jersey sponsor for the first time in two years.
If it sounds like a lot, that's because it is a lot. But the Rhinos are hoping they still mean a lot, or at least enough, for the community to come together and make it happen.